The story at the link below prompted me to put in my 2 cents worth on the topic of ‘animal rights people’ getting very vocally involved in animal activities they rarely know much, if anything, about:
Animal Behaviorists and Trainers vs Advocates and Often the “Mindless Mob” Regarding Animal Issues:
From having trained hundreds, if not thousands of horses in the past 40+ years, and from knowing many world class trainers in dressage, hunter/jumpers, some western events, in Thoroughbred racing, with gaited horses, endurance riders, real honest-to-goodness cowboy’s, polo players, etc, I truly know that even though a horse may be physically and athletically talented as-can-be for a particular type of event or “use-and-purpose”, none of that physical talent matters one bit if they do not have the “try” and/or a WILLING mindset to perform in that arena, area, or event, and they will NEVER excel in it to any higher degree.
Intelligent and compassionate trainers of any and all species of animals KNOW this is true, and since successful and talented trainers also know how to read body language, expression, and KNOW the language of the animals they train, trainers that possess skill, and also empathy, compassion, and LOVE for the animals they are training and interacting with that I have known through the years of many different types of animals would EVER force an animal to perform if they clearly are NOT “into” it and are being resistant, explosive, sullen, agitated, nervous, anxious, scared, etc.
Skilled trainers that are mentally, physically, and emotionally “connected” to the animals they train and interact with would be seeing and experiencing the animal not enjoying what they are doing one bit, and thus, the animal, who is literally their “partner” in the endeavor where TRUST also needs to exist of truly “knowing” one another, will never truly excel in doing something they don’t like, that they may hate, that could be perhaps causing them beyond mild discomfort (just like with people, most animals do live with discomfort and/or some pain as they age and/or depending on what types of lives they lead, in whatever environment they are in), or all of these things.
Do animals sometimes get “stressed-out”? Absolutely they do.
And while an observant trainer can usually see the signs of stress in the animals they train and will back-off, have them “take a vacation from training”, “let them down” as we call it with Thoroughbred racehorses, and basically just give the animal “a break from training”, sometimes, just as with some people, the signs of what may be going to happen are not completely seen as going to lead to a violent event occurring when an animal, or a person, has an emotional/mental “breakdown”.
The irrationality of having a few events annually of violence with animals, or with people, “doing their job” or simply “interacting” with people, and then eliminating completely whatever it is they were doing when the break-down occurred, is just that, irrational.
In a perfect world everybody loves what they do, they never get stressed, they never have “bad days”, etc.
I also am of the belief that I would prefer that most dolphins, as well as most wild horses and burros, stay wild, and selective captures are only done as a necessity.
However, the world is not perfect, and when some people paint an animals life in the wild as all sunshine and rainbows, it is an understatement when I say that is being disingenuous.
Also consider this; wild animals live a day to day existence in the wild of having to find food, find water (for land mammals), raise their young to adulthood, avoid being killed by predators whether they are other animals, or are humans, and many other things.
THAT is STRESSFUL for dolphins in the wild in the ocean, just like its stressful for many other types of wild animals such as endangered species Siberian Tigers, wolves, big horn sheep, and also wild horses as examples.
We have many captive wild horses that we adopted, they were adopted by other people and the people were unable to handle them so they were dumping them at a sale where kill buyers would most likely buy them and ship them to slaughter, we have outbid kill buyers and bought several captive wild horses at the kill sale, etc.
Some have taken beautifully to captivity, they are friendly to the point of being pests (lol), they took to “gentling” and saddle training like a fish-to-water, and if they were turned loose again, they wouldn’t like it one bit.
We also have some captive wild horses that are friendly to a point, they like to be scratched and interacted with to an extent, however, they would never be happy being saddle trained and that’s why people got rid of them and we took them in rather than them being taken to the kill sale, or given to a horse trader or kill buyer from a “Free Horse” ad on Craigslist after the person received the Title to the horse.
Then there are the “I’d rather not horses” who would “rather not” be domestic horses.
They would “rather not” be handled at all and will become explosive and dangerous if cornered, they will try and jump fences, or run through them, if someone presses them too hard, they freak out in a chute and will injure or kill themselves trying to get away, etc.
Unfortunately for them, they will never be wild again because it is illegal to turn a freeze-branded wild horse that had been captured loose again.
Interestingly enough however, although they don’t wish to be trained for anything, or even touched (we have to herd them into a little corral and then into a chute to do anything “hands-on” with them, and some are still extremely explosive and dangerous to themselves and people in the chute too), when we’ve had these types get loose on our unfenced property, they never go anywhere.
They may initially run around the perimeter of the corrals, the hormonal mares run over to our stallions, but then they settle down and browse on loose hay, nibble on some sagebrush or native grasses, visit with horses in other corrals, etc.
So although they don’t want people to touch them, halter them, or do anything with them, they are very “practical-minded” and would rather hang-around, have food and water provided for them everyday where they don’t have to hike a distance to find it (some wild horses have to walk 10 miles or more to get to a water source out in the desert), and are domestic in the respect they don’t run off and become wild again even though the mares could probably and easily join one of the bands that frequent our area where we currently live.
These types of horses are in herd-groups that are appropriate to their temperament, disposition, their physical condition, their age, and their place in a hierarchy, and they do very well if in the correct herd group.
It is going to be very interesting to watch horses form various herd groups when we make the move to over 100 acres they can roam on.
Be Sure You KNOW Exactly WHAT You’re Getting Involved In So You DON’T Do More Harm Than Good:
So even though some people may get involved in an issue because of slick photos and hearsay, and they clamor for the release of captive wild dolphins, or perhaps dolphins raised in captivity, just like some of the captive-wild horses we have, and also the Mustangs that have been raised in captivity from birth, as often is the case, there are people who aren’t behaviorists for dolphins, or any other types of animals either, but because THEY WANT to be “a part of SOMETHING” and feel like they are “making a difference” (whether that’s a ‘good’ or ‘bad’ difference isn’t relevant to them), they make a lot of noise and get their own way……………and after they “win”, they are GONE, and that’s-that.
It’s like these people lose interest regarding the lives of these living, breathing, feeling beings they think they “rescued”, and they move-on to another CAUSE involving animals they know nothing about again, they “go back” to their “real lives”, they now have “bragging-rights” that they “helped” ‘save’ animals from “whatever”, they “go somewhere”, but that “somewhere” rarely includes KEEPING-TRACK of WHERE the animals they SAVED or RESCUED from “WHATEVER” ended-up or “landed” as they say in the “elite country-club-type” “rescue-circles” on the Internet.
They lose interest, or perhaps are afraid to keep track of, WHERE the animals they supposedly “rescued” ended up, are they alive or dead, if alive, are they happy, or are they depressed, lonesome, an outcast, what??
People have very short-memories, and even shorter attention spans regarding AFTER the EXCITMENT and DRAMA of the event is OVER, WHAT EXACTLY happened to the animals they supposedly ‘saved’, WHERE are those animals NOW, do they DONATE any MONEY for the upkeep and maintenance of the “animals with issues” that can’t be wild ever again, or maybe were never wild in their lives, the animals that can’t be adopted-out and are often killed rather than being maintained for months or years.
“Causes” That Include ANIMALS As “BAIT” to Rally the MOBS:
So quite frankly, I reject what many so-called “rescuers” and “advocates” have to say when I realize:
1. they are not animal behaviorists and they clearly have no idea what they are talking about, but have fallen for the ‘stick and carrot’ lure of becoming emotionally involved with something they know little, if anything at all about;
2. they don’t really CARE about what has happened to the animals AFTER they “get their own way” (and they also were simply a “social media madness mob” formed by ringleaders who receive the attention for the “save” or “rescue”, the MONEY, the power, the control, and the ACCOLADES because without the “worker bee” MOB, the ringleader-manipulators pulling-the-strings are NOTHING, and they know it). It’s as if their cause was a competition that they “won”, but its the “animals with issues” that more often then people realize LOSE their lives in the aftermath of the rescue that never should have happened.
Why do they die, or are killed by their “rescuers”?
Because MOST people and/or ‘rescues’ do NOT want to maintain and take care of animals that are wild or have physical and/or behavioral issues.
Why is that?
Because hardly anyone donates to sanctuaries and hospices that take in these types of animals, so these types of rescues that take in the “animals with issues” that render them unadoptable/un-sellable, struggle along just doing the best they can, usually working in jobs outside-of-rescue to support themselves and their animals.
The sanctuaries and hospices do the non-exciting and/or dramatic everyday, daily care of animal rescuing, and NOT the pumped-up “WE NEED YOUR DONATIONS NOW” ‘crisis rescuing’ that many of the donation-funded adoption-based “rescues” do that pulls in the $$$ by the thousands for a single “rescue event” because of the excitement, the adrenaline-pumping drama, and the IMMEDIACY of “we NEED money NOW to ‘save’/’rescue’ these animals”.
How to get people to CARE “AFTER the exciting and drama-fueled ‘rescue” or save’ is still a mystery to me, and although I’m still seeking answers to those questions, I realize that for some people, the “rescue” or “save” is always more about THEIR NEED to feel important and ‘special’ for a short period of time, and far less about the animals involved……………because if it REALLY was ABOUT the ANIMALS, people WOULD ASK QUESTIONS and KEEP TRACK of ALL of the actual animals they supposedly were “helping” “save” or “rescue”.
THAT, their NEED and “wanting” to feel important and special for a short period of time, may turn out to be WHY they rarely, if ever, follow-through with asking questions AFTER the animals are supposedly “rescued”, whether they are better off after being “rescued” from “wherever”, are they alive, or tragically, did their “rescue” lead to them now being dead because they had physical and/or behavioral “issues” no one wanted to deal with, so they were killed as what is stupidly called by some ‘rescues’ and ‘rescuers’ the last act of kindness, when the FACT is that the animal did NOT want to be DEAD at all.
For all of the advocates and rescuers out in the world and/or on the Internet; PLEASE CARE ENOUGH to ASK QUESTIONS AFTER the “save” or “rescue” of animals is “supposedly” “DONE”.
DONATION-FUNDED rescues and advocacy organizations that have “crisis rescues” and “crisis events” ALL THE TIME it seems, are ALWAYS ready, willing, able, and they DO ASK the PUBLIC for donations.
However, MOST of these publically donation-funded-in-order-to-operate rescues and advocacy organizations are entirely UNWILLING, and they REFUSE to ANSWER SIMPLE and EASY organized QUESTIONS when asked by a member of the PUBLIC whose generous donations are the primary reason they are able to operate at all.
Please members-of-the-PUBLIC, ask QUESTIONS AFTER the ‘save’ or ‘rescue’ that YOU made the decision to become a part of.
The LIFE you may be saving with your QUESTIONS could be the life of an INNOCENT and HELPLESS animal who WANTS to LIVE!
The Information and Verification Questionnaire that should be sent to any and all donation-funded animal rescues, humane societies, spca’s, and animals controls that “partner” with any of these organizations is located here:
IF you decide to send it to a publically donation-funded rescue and/or animal advocacy organization and they are unwilling or refuse to answer some simple and easy-to-answer questions, you have within your power the ability and reason to file a complaint with the appropriate State that the organization is registered in with the Attorney General’s office.
THEY CAN and WILL get the answers to the questions that you were UNABLE to get because the organization IGNORED YOU.
Please do this for the animals you participated in “rescuing” or “saving” because many animals die, or are killed AFTER the ‘rescue’ BY THE “RESCUE”, that people are simply not aware of.
Please be willing to ASK QUESTIONS as you have a perfect right to do with a publically donation-funded rescue and/or animal advocacy organization.
The HONEST rescues and advocacy organizations WILL gladly answer your questions.